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Saturday, April 19, 2014

1971 Nissan Skyline 2000 GT-R - Hakosuka First Drive

This 1971 Nissan Skyline 2000 GT-R KPGC-10, or Hakosuka is one of about 500 left in the world. This car and owner have a unique story. The old owner sold it to the current owner for about 1/2 its value, but the new owner had to maintain his garden, something he has been doing the last 25 years.

First launched in 1969, the "Hakosuka" GT-R ("hako" meaning boxy, "suka" coming from the Japanese pronunciation of Skyline) was a rare sight. Nissan only built 1945 of them. And today, estimates put the number of original GT-Rs remaining on Japan's streets at about 500.

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The real GT-R is distinguishable from its "run of the mill" Hakosuka 2000GT brothers by the S20 engine. Dual over head cams, with a huge flat valve cover.

S20 engine. 

Before taking the car for a spin, we asked him to open the hood. Perched in his engine bay was one of Nissan's prettiest-ever powerplants, the so-called S20. With its polished triple Weber carburetors and six shiny pipes, not to mention that bright red rocker cover sporting a Nissan 2000 insignia, the car's pedigree is evident. Essentially the same specification as that of the 1966 Nissan/Prince R380 race car, this 2.0-litre straight-six develops 160 hp at 7000 rpm and 130 lb-ft of torque at 5600 rpm.

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These Hakosuka's are the cars that eventually paved the way for the R32,R33,R34,and R35 GT-R.  A 1971 Hakosuka would be legal to import to the US, and even register in California. Over 25 years old for the NHTSA, over 21 for the EPA, and older than 1975 for California. More information -

And what about the car itself? As you might expect, given its racing history and rarity, this GT-R is not cheap. He says it's currently worth around $100,000, but the potential sales price means nothing to him. "I wouldn't sell for double that amount," he said. "Because you just can't find impeccably maintained GT-Rs anymore." And no 43-year-old car handles or sounds like this anyway."

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